Michael Snow
Clothed Woman (In Memory of my Father) 1963
oil and lucite on canvas
152 x 386.2 cm
Purchased 1966
National Gallery of Canada



Aboriginal art is chronologically integrated throughout the Canadian galleries for the first time. The Gallery awards the 2001 Millennium Prize, the first international contemporary art prize in Canada, to Janet Cardiff for Forty-part Motet, a sound installation in the Rideau Chapel that reportedly causes some visitors to weep

Previous Decade | 2000 | 2001 | 2002 | 2003 | 2004 | 2005 | 2006 | 2007 | 2008 | 2009




The Gallery coats its 6,000 windows with a plastic sheet to protect patrons and artwork in the event of a terrorist attack at the nearby U.S. embassy. The Treasury Board grants the $3.2 million funding.


The National Gallery revives a publication tradition with the launch of its new annual art journal, The Review. An attractive and engaging resource, it presents contributions by curators and conservators, and demonstrates the NGC’s commitment to the advancement of knowledge of the visual arts.

The National Gallery of Canada is the first art institution in Canada to feature on its website a list of works of art and digital images of over 100 paintings and sculptures from its permanent collection that have gaps in their provenance for the year 1933-1945.

The online Provenance Research Project presents the Gallery's continuing research on the provenance of works in its collection during the period 1933-1945, published in accordance with the Guidelines Governing the Unlawful Appropriation of Objects during the Nazi Era.

The Library’s catalogue is made available on the Web, and includes archival records and materials relating to all Gallery exhibitions dating back to its inception.


Co-produced with the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts, Mexican Modern Art, 1900-1950, is on view from February to May and features some 270 works by fifty of Mexico's finest artists. It is the first display of Mexican modern art in Canada since the early forties.

During the summer, Monet, Renoir and the Impressionist Landscape, organized by the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston, features 67 exceptional works; the National Gallery is the first North American and only Canadian stop on the exhibition's tour.

The Gallery celebrates artist Alex Colville’s 80th birthday with the exhibition Alex Colville: Milestones.




Following a long strike, which started on 10 May, the Public Service Alliance of Canada (PSAC) bargaining team and the National Gallery of Canada announced that they have concluded a tentative agreement for the 200 workers. PSAC accepted the agreement at a vote held on July 13.

The Gallery’s annual acquisition budget is increased to $6 million.


Canadian singer and songwriter Bryan Adams donates Emily Carr's The Welcome Man, 1913 to the National Gallery, the most important painting from the early stage of Carr's career.

In April, the National Gallery of Canada returns the relief sculpture Figure of an Arhat (c. 700-720 A.D.) by an unknown artist from the Tang Dynasty to China for ethical reasons.

The Gallery awards the 2001 Millennium Prize, the first international contemporary art prize in Canada, to Janet Cardiff for her work Forty-Part Motet.


First of a series of exhibitions featuring drawings from the Gallery’s collection, Italian Drawings from Canadian Collections comprises of a selection of some seventy works from the 16th to 19th centuries.

For the first time in North America, the Gallery brings together some 120 of Klimt's greatest masterpieces in Gustav Klimt: Modernism in the Making. Shown during the summer, Ottawa is the exhibition's only venue.




On 26 September, the National Gallery of Canada launches Phase II of CyberMuse-Art Unlimited Your On-Line Educational Tool, with the generous support of the AMEX Foundation. It contains new content specifically designed for students, educators, children and arts enthusiasts. Phase II includes state-of-the-art interactive learning tools, as well as practical teaching resources for schools. It makes nearly 10,000 digitized images of the permanent collection available for on-line viewing.


The Gallery bridges the gaps in provenance for four paintings; Gustav Klimt’s Hope I, Hieronymus Bosch’s The Temptation of St. Anthony, Veneto Bartolomeo’s Portrait of a Young Lady, and Harold Gilman’s A Swedish Village.


No Man's Land. The Photographs of Lynne Cohen, on view from February to May, provides visitors the opportunity to step inside Lynne Cohen's extraordinary interiors with over 60 photographs.

The retrospective exhibition Gathie Falk, celebrating the career of the Vancouver artist, excites the imagination by unveiling the witty and unexpected in the everyday with nearly 80 works.

On view during the summer of 2002, Tom Thomson is the first major retrospective of his work in over 30 years and features over 160 oil sketches, paintings and designs by Thomson and additional paintings by his contemporaries.

The Prints of Betty Goodwin brings together almost 100 works created between 1969 and 1994. With some 249 of pieces, the Gallery has the largest collection of Betty Goodwin’s art, including four sculptures, one painting, 32 drawings and 212 prints.

The Gallery also presented the most remarkable collection of jade sculptures ever shown outside China, Jade, the Ultimate Treasure of Ancient China, which featured 120 jade pieces and groupings, some dating from 7000 B.C.




Pierre Théberge is reappointed as Director of the National Gallery of Canada.

is reappointed as Director of the National Gallery of Canada.


The acquisition budget is increased further by $2 million, making the $8 million annual acquisition budget the largest the Gallery has ever received.


The Gallery publishes Treasures of the National Gallery of Canada, a beautifully illustrated, 288-page, catalogue representing some of the finest and most significant works held by the National Gallery. The reproductions are each accompanied by a detailed description of the artist, his work, and the respective importance of both.


After an overwhelming success in Quebec City, the exhibition Suzor-Coté, 1869-1937: Light and Matter comes to Ottawa from January to May. This retrospective sheds light on many unknown aspects of Suzor-Coté's life through 82 paintings, 45 works on paper, and 15 sculptures.

In an exhibition entitled Edward Burtynsky: Manufacturated Landscapes, 60 stunning large-scale colour landscapes photographs are on view from January to May. This is the first major examination of the internationally-renowned photographer.

Summer 2003 presents The Age of Watteau, Chardin and Fragonard: Masterpieces of French Genre Painting. It brings together some 100 paintings by 25 of the most gifted artists of the 18th century, including works never before shown in Canada.

Featuring 180 rarely seen paintings and drawings by our nation’s most celebrated artists, The Group of Seven in Western Canada showcases five decades of groundbreaking work in Canada’s West.

Celebrating the fifth centenary of the birth of Parmigianino, A Beautiful and Gracious Manner: The Art of Parmigianino assembles some 60 of the artist’s most important drawings, pioneering prints and intimate paintings.

Art of this Land chronologically integrates First Nations art with the Canadian works on display in the galleries.

The Gallery mounts The Body Transformed, a showcase of works by some of the world’s best modern and contemporary sculptors, at Shawinigan Space, a national historic site in Shawinigan, Quebec.




The National Gallery of Canada acquires Emily Carr’s painting Forest Landscape (1932), thanks to the NGC Foundation’s new Corporate Circle program.

The Gallery also acquires several documents from the studio of renowned English painter Francis Bacon (1909-1992), donated by Barry Joule, a Canadian who was the painter's friend. The material is related to Bacon's Study for Portrait No. 1, an oil painting of a pope owned by the National Gallery of Canada.

The Gallery continues to expand its Audioguide program by featuring more than one exhibition per year, and launching a children version for the summer exhibitions. With the generous support of Bell Canada, the Gallery launches highlights of the Canadian collection in three new languages: German, Spanish, and Mandarin.


Noah’s Ark, the second exhibition presented at Shawinigan Space, opens for the summer.

Some 20 sculptures and numerous works on paper by Canadian-born, New York-based contemporary artist David Rabinowitch are presented and offer a critical overview of his art as it has developed in major cycles spanning several decades.

Faces, Places, Traces: New Acquisitions to the Photographs Collection showcases 97 photographs that reflect the scope and depth of the history of photography from its beginnings in 1839 up to the present day.

French Drawings from Canadian Collections is part of a series of exhibitions bringing together more than 100 landscapes, portraits, genre pictures, and representations of historical and religious subjects dating from the 17th to the 19th centuries.

The summer exhibition The Great Parade: Portrait of the Artist as Clown comprises nearly 200 paintings, drawings, prints, vintage photographs, sculptures and videos, including Picasso’s stage curtain painted for the ballet Parade in 1917, measuring 16.2 metres wide by 10.52 metres high (53 by 34.5 feet).

In the Fall, the Gallery marks the hundredth anniversary of Jean Paul Lemieux’s birth with Homage to Jean Paul Lemieux. This exhibition brings together more than 50 paintings and drawings by this remarkable Quebecois painter.

Material Differences: Art and Identity in Africa shows how, in African art, the choice of material (wood, ivory, stone, metals, ceramics and animal parts) is an important means of constructing identity and power.




The National Gallery of Canada celebrates its 125th anniversary with exhibitions ranging from the Renaissance to the Sixties and beyond. The Gallery holds extraordinary exhibitions, art installations and activities in Ottawa and across Canada.

On 28 May, the National Gallery of Canada Foundation presents its first-ever national fundraising Ball to mark the occasion of the Gallery’s 125th anniversary, Attracting close to 500 patrons from the arts, business and government community, the Renaissance Ball raises over $1 million in net revenue. The Government of Canada, through the Department of Canadian Heritage’s Minister, the Honourable Liza Frulla, matches this amount, thus creating a balanced blend of private and public funding.

The funds are also used support the National Gallery of Canada’s travelling exhibitions program across Canada, as well as educational art programs for children. The Renaissance Ball is recognized at the 9th Annual Canadian Event Industry Awards as the “Best Fundraising Event" for 2005.


The funds raised by the Renaissance, including an exceptional gift from the Volunteers' Circle of the National Gallery of Canada, are directed to the acquisition of two major works of art for the Gallery’s permanent collection by Francesco Salviati: David and Virgin and Child with an Angel.

Maman by Louise Bourgeois is installed outside the National Gallery of Canada. The 30-foot-tall (9.25 m) bronze spider carries a sack of 26 pure white marble eggs under her belly. “Maman is a very important and exciting acquisition for the Gallery and for Canada as a whole,” says Pierre Théberge, Director of the National Gallery of Canada. “Her sheer size and extraordinary power make Maman an icon that will turn the National Gallery’s Plaza into a landmark.

The Gallery publishes the Index to Nineteenth-Century Canadian Catalogues of Art, a 2,000-page, two-volume resource that helps identify, date and establish previous ownership of artworks, which facilitates research on the history of artistic production, art collecting and the art market in 19th-century Canada.

The Gallery acquires Jacopo Pontormo’s Renaissance drawing Reclining Male Nude (1530-1540), a sketch that passed as a Michelangelo original for at least two centuries.


The exhibition Leonardo da Vinci, Michelangelo, and the Renaissance in Florence, curated by Dr. David Franklin, Deputy Director and Chief Curator, features 125 paintings, sculptures, drawings, and prints highlighting the genius of such Florentine luminaries as Michelangelo, Leonardo, Bronzino, Andrea del Sarto, and Piero di Cosimo. It marks the first time a High Renaissance exhibition of this remarkable scope has been produced outside Florence.

For its 125th anniversary, the Gallery gets groovy with The Sixties in Canada, a trip back in time to a decade of unprecedented experimentation, when artists tested the limits and pushed the boundaries of artistic expression. It charts the emergence of pop art, minimalism, kinetic and conceptual art through some 80 works by well-known figures.

The Gallery teams up with one of Canada’s largest financial institutions to present an exhibition of exceptional art from Canada’s North: ItuKiagâtta! Inuit Sculpture from the Collection of the TD Bank Financial Group, featuring 91 stone, bone and ivory sculptures.

British Drawings features 114 works spanning on three centuries of superb draughtsmanship by works by the likes of William Hogarth, Benjamin West, Thomas Gainsborough, J.M.W. Turner, Samuel Palmer and Henry Moore.

The Gallery marks Newfoundland artist Christopher Pratt’s 70th birthday with more than 60 large-scale landscapes, seascapes, buildings, interiors and figures, as well as some study drawings and biographical material on the artist.

The second phase of the innovative Art of this Land project is launched with the installation of a generous loan from the British Museum in London, England.

At Shawinigan Space, the Gallery celebrates the forms and forces of nature as interpreted by 13 contemporary artists. The Elements of Nature has a unique interpretation of nature and our place in the natural world.




Due to major construction work, which is scheduled to increase during 2007 with the repair of the terrace, the CMCP closes its doors to visitors in October. As a precaution against construction-related damage, the CMCP collections are moved to the NGC. The entire collection, including 17,500 photographic works as well as the National Film Board collection of 144,400 negatives and transparencies, are relocated from its regular home of 1 Rideau Canal to a gallery especially arranged to house the collection. The move involves the transport of more than 1,500 boxes and packages and 132 crates of framed work-as well as two slotted, insulated “super crates” that will store large-sized prints until their return to the CMCP.


Through its Foundation, the Gallery receives an extraordinary gift of $2 million dollars for the creation of The Audain Endowment for Contemporary Canadian Art to acquire Canadian contemporary art with an emphasis on British Columbia.

The Gallery acquires the work People’s Flag, 2006 by Canadian artist Brian Jungen. The work is a monumental work composed of an accumulation of red-coloured clothes and material that were assembled in Vancouver and London charity shops. This complements the Gallery’s small but significant Jungen holdings, which include the sculptures Shapeshifter and Vienna.

The Gallery adds to its Indigenous collection the work of Canadian Norval Morrisseau Artist and Shaman between Two Worlds, 1980.

Le Salon de Madame Aron by Édouard Vuillard, whose provenance is cleared in 2004, is returned to Alfred Lindon’ heirs in 2006.

The Gallery is the first visual arts museum in Canada to offer podcasting. The launch of the Lisette Model sub-site on CyberMuse introduces podcasting, where visitors can download complete MP3 audio files featuring interviews and lectures.


The National Gallery of Canada presents the first solo exhibition by a First Nations artist. It showcases 59 selected paintings by Anishnaabe artist Norval Morrisseau, also known as Copper Thunderbird.

Morrisseau is considered to be the father of contemporary Aboriginal art, and can lay claim to creating a completely new art movement, known as the “Woodland School” or the “Anishaabe School” of painting. This school of art is typified by Morrisseau’s signature “x-ray” representation of animals and people in which the interiors of living beings are shown with a stylized skeletal structure and are often embellished with connecting “spirit” lines and “power” lines.

During the summer, Emily Carr: New Perspectives features some 200 objects, including a partial reconstruction of the Gallery's 1927 exhibition. Presented by Sun Life Financial, it is co-organized by the National Gallery and the Vancouver Art Gallery.

Acting the Part: Photography as Theatre is one of the first exhibitions to explore the transformation and wide variety of “staged” photographs from the mid-nineteenth century to the present.

The eighth member of the Group of Seven, Edwin Holgate is featured in the largest retrospective ever devoted to his work, offering over 150 works that include paintings, drawings, watercolours, prints, notebooks, book illustrations and archival photographs.

The show Clarence Gagnon, 1881-1942. Dreaming the landscape offers an exceptional journey through more than 200 paintings, engravings and illustrations by the artist.

Known for his explosion works, gunpowder drawings and theatrical installations, Cai Guo-Qiang is a Chinese-born artist now working in New York. His work is featured at Shawinigan Space in the exhibition Long Scroll organized in collaboration with the MASS MoCA (Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art).




The Gallery receives Treasury Board approval for $14.8 million from the Management Reserve Fund over the fiscal years 2007-08 to 2009-10 to address capital infrastructure renewal projects.


The Gallery is one of 17 federal departments and agencies that participated in the federal government’s Strategic Review process. As part of this process, the Gallery conducts a rigorous and comprehensive assessment of its funding, relevance, spending and program performance. The 2007 Strategic Review demonstrates the responsible and effective management of public funds by the Gallery and identifies the 5% least-performing programs and services. The immediate result of the process represents a reduction of 1.5% in 2008-09 and 2.5% in subsequent years.

The Gallery Board of Trustees holds its first Annual Public Meeting, on December 3rd.

The Audain Curator of Indigenous Art Endowment is created through a $2-million gift from the Audain Foundation received in 2006. Greg A. Hill is appointed as Curator of Indigenous Art and is responsible for exhibitions, acquisitions, loans, research, and publishing in relation to the care and the promotion of the collection of indigenous art.

The National Gallery of Canada is constantly seeking to improve its services and offer the best possible experience to its visitors. As a result, the Gallery undertakes a number of improvements;

• The NGC offers various programs adapted and developed specifically for individuals with special needs, thanks to the generous support of The J.W. McConnell Family Foundation.

• An interactive floorplan is made available on CyberMuse. This innovative online program enables anyone to navigate throughout the Gallery’s various exhibition spaces, and even design a personalized tour.

• The Gallery launches the Rideau Street Convent Chapel on CyberMuse. The website uncovers the origins of the Chapel with an illustrated timeline and detailed 3D renderings.

• ShopNGC, the latest addition to the Gallery’s family of websites, becomes available online. This virtual boutique sells 300 items from the NGC bookstore.

• The Gallery’s re-designed website is launched, and constitutes the first major overhaul since 2001 of 8,000 pages of content. The site’s rich virtual resources become more accessible, searchable, and prominent to even the most casual visitor.
The Gallery’s educational and interactive art website, CyberMuse, has won numerous awards and attracts more than 33 million virtual visitors each year.

Promoting collections, exchanges and exhibitions, the National Gallery of Canada collaborates with other galleries and lends more than 1,000 works of art a year to venues in Canada and around the world.

The Gallery and its feature exhibitions attract audiences to the Ottawa region and in turn contribute to the area’s economic growth. Through the critical role they play in making these exhibitions possible, the Gallery’s partners assist the arts in Canada while simultaneously generating regional economic growth


The National Gallery of Canada currently has a collection of more than 35,000 works of art, with 1,200 of the most significant on view within the Gallery at any one time.

The Gallery’s collection of Canadian art is the most comprehensive in existence. The museum also boasts impressive collections of contemporary Inuit art and historical photography, along with a fine collection of Western European art from the late Middle Ages to the present.

The library of the National Gallery is the most extensive visual arts library in Canada with a collection of more than 230,000 books, exhibition catalogues and periodicals.

The Gallery acquires A Girl, a spectacular sculpture by internationally acclaimed hyper-realist artist Ron Mueck. The Gallery now has three works by the artist: Old Woman in Bed, 2000 purchased in 2001, and Head of a Baby, 2003, purchased that same year.

The work of Chinese-born Cai Guo-Qiang, Illusion 2004, is purchased following the exhibition in Shawinigan the previous summer.

The Gallery also acquires Douglas Gordon and Philippe Parreno’s Zidane: A 21st Century Portrait (2006), a 90-minutes film which alternates between close-ups of the French superstar’s knees, feet, torso, and face, and full-body shots of him, running; kicking and waiting for action. The film was produced while the athlete was observed by 17 cameras and 80,000 fans, yet he remains utterly absorbed in the game.

A rare work of art by Canadian artist, David Milne (1882-1953), Alcove (1914), is added to the National Gallery of Canada's collection, with the support of the Andrea and Charles Bronfman Canadian Art Fund.


The National Gallery of Canada presents Ron Mueck, an exclusive Canadian exhibition of this renowned Australian sculptor. An impressive 83,500 visitors flock to the Gallery to view the largest collection of Mueck’s work since the beginning of his career.

The National Gallery of Canada reaches more Canadians through its traveling exhibitions than any other visual arts institution in the country. In recent time some 35 traveling exhibitions in venues from coast to coast reached more than 250,000 visitors.

In collaboration with the Museum of Anthropology at the University of British Columbia, the Gallery presents Robert Davidson: The Abstract Edge, dedicated to this contemporary Haida artist. It is presented by Bombardier.

German Drawings is the latest in a series of exhibitions highlighting the permanent collection that began with Italian Drawings in 2001, followed by Dutch and Flemish Drawings in 2003, French Drawings in 2005 and British Drawings in 2006.

Ten years after the memorable Renoir’s Portraits, which set an attendance record of 340,000, the Gallery is the only Canadian venue for Renoir Landscapes, 1865-1883. It is presented by Sun Life Financial and jointly organized by the National Gallery of Canada, the National Gallery, London, and the Philadelphia Museum of Art.

From October to January, the Gallery is the only Canadian venue for Snap Judgments: New Positions in Contemporary African Photography. The exhibition presents over 165 works by 40 acclaimed artists from a dozen African countries and is organized by the International Center of Photography in New York City.

At Shawinigan Space, One, Some, Many: 3 Shows by Carsten Höller is the first solo exhibition in Canada by this internationally-acclaimed, Belgian-born artist. He is widely known for his large-scale, multimedia and sculptural projects that unfailingly transform the way people interact with art and their surroundings.




The Gallery celebrates the 20th anniversary of its building at 380 Sussex Drive, in Ottawa, Canada.

The Volunteer's Circle of the National Gallery of Canada celebrates 50th years of wonderful activities since it started in 1958. The Circle releases In the Company of Friends, a book that traces the development of five decades of dedicated and creative volunteering at the Gallery by exceptional people. The celebration culminates with a grand public tribute on October 5 which included a free admission day for everyone.

The newly redesigned Canadian Museum of Contemporary Photography website goes live in August. The second phase of the project which will feature much more on its rich collections will be launched in 2009.

With the financial support of the RBC Foundation, the Gallery redesigns its school website. Launched in August, the site presents more detailed information in a clear and user-friendly way. All lessons plans are updated and new ones are added. New features like on-line booking for schools are very well received by teachers.


The National Gallery of Canada Foundation announces an important gift of $650,000 from 13 of its Distinguished Patrons to create the first endowment dedicated to the National Gallery of Canada’s travelling exhibition program, On Tour. This gift will also support the acquisition of the work that was the source of its inspiration, Running Horses, a breathtaking laser-cut steel and bronze sculpture by Canadian artist Joe Fafard.


More than 8,000 digitally archived images and documents linked to the major exhibition Canadian Painting in the Thirties, first presented by the NGC in 1975, are made available only within CyberMuse, NGC’s research and education site.

Over 69 works – ceramic, bronze plaster, and steel sculptures, as well as works on paper – by Fransaskois artist Joe Fafard were shown from February to May before travelling to the MacKenzie Art Gallery, co-organizer of the exhibition, and other venues. An educational website was created to support the exhibition while on tour.

Following the acquisition of some major works owned by Lord Dalhousie, the Gallery presented Lord Dalhousie: Patron and Collector, featuring 140 watercolors, sketches, lithographs, models, architectural drawings and other objects commissioned in the early 19th century by George Ramsay, the 9th Earl of Dalhousie.

The 1930s: The Making of “The New Man” exhibition was presented exclusively in Ottawa and featured over 200 works by 103 artists including Ernst, Picasso, Miro, Giacometti, Sander, Wood and Albright. A war artist during World War II, guest speaker Alex Colville recounts, at the exhibition opening, how he witnessed to the era and ideology surrounding the creation of “the new man”.

The Gallery displays the first major retrospective of the work of one of Canada’s most celebrated contemporary, landscape photographers, Geoffrey James. The exhibition comprises 91 works created between 1987 and 2002.

Caught in the Act:The Viewer as Performer is a dynamic and innovative exhibition of contemporary Canadian Art, which presented sculptural works by ten artists and collectives.

Bernini and the Birth of Baroque Portrait Sculpture organized in collaboration with the J.Paul Getty Museum in Los Angeles, documents the remarkable rise of the sculpted portrait in Rome in the early seventeenth century. The exhibition was named “one of the top 10 exhibitions in North America in 2008” by Times Magazine.

After a six year agreement, the Gallery organizes its last exhibition at Shawinigan Space. Real Life features the work of internationally renowned sculptor Ron Mueck, and Berlin-based video artist Guy Ben-Ner. A reduced version of the exhibition travels to other venues in Canada.




The Gallery acquires Theatre of Cruelty, an immersive art installation by internationally-renowned Canadian artist Geoffrey Farmer, through the generous support of the NGC Foundation’s Audain Endowment for Contemporary Canadian Art.

The Petrobelli Altarpiece by Paolo Veronese is restored and shown in the summer along with three other known fragments, a first in three centuries.


In the summer, the Gallery presents the Canadian exclusivity of one of the most important periods in art history, the Italian Renaissance. Presented by Sun Life Financial, From Raphael to Carracci: The Art of Papal Rome examines Renaissance Rome through a careful selection of 150 exceptional paintings and drawings.